State House legislators of the “Show Me State” are tentatively testing the waters of legalized medical cannabis. HB 1554 was passed by a voice vote on April 23rd. The bill authorizes individuals 18 and over suffering from a terminal illness to legally purchases and use cannabis for medical purposes. The bill also legalizes the use of medical cannabis for treating the symptoms of cancer, Alzheimer’s, post-traumatic stress disorder and a variety of other conditions.
Under the bill, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services would be authorized to issue medical cannabis registration cards to residents 18 and older. These residents will need to provide a signed statement from a doctor that they meet the bill’s criteria.
Some legislators feel the bill is too restrictive and favor a bill that would make cannabis use legal across the board. Previous bills designed to placate conservative legislators authorized medical cannabis only for patients dying from terminal cancer in hospice. All of those bills were voted down on the basis that they were too restrictive.
The current bill has passed the House and now goes on to the state Senate. If approved by the Senate, rules and regulations will need to be codified and promulgated. This is bad news for patients seeking legal medical cannabis therapies.
The fate of the bill in the Senate remains unclear. Opponents say cannabis is still illegal under federal law. The Missouri Association of Prosecuting Attorneys testified against the bill in committee earlier this year.
In Missouri, cannabis legality rests on the flip of a coin.
A marketing and publishing professional and the Director of Publicity at GB Sciences, Liz Bianco monitors media activity and co-writes the “State of the States” on cannabis in America.
A consultant and co-author with Meredith Patterson of “Pillars of Brain Health” at BrainstormMindFitness.com, Pete Goodwin does research and co-writes the State of the States blog.
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